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Web Presenter: High Quality Distance EducationPenn State Public Broadcasting, WPSX-TV/WPSU-FM

The Challenge: Delivering High Quality Distance Education at a Lower Cost

It all began with the Masters Graduate Program in Acoustics. The distance education courses for this program were originally distributed in full video via satellite, employing a phone bridge for questions and answers between students and the instructor. This satellite technology was very expensive. Satellite delivery was replaced with PictureTel, using telephone lines for distribution, but the quality was compromised.

The Solution: Web Presenter

Duane Champion, Director of Computer Technology and Assistant Chief Engineer, Penn State Public Broadcasting, spent a year working with faculty in the Acoustics department and with staff at Penn State Public Broadcasting to develop Web Presenter, an integrated, multimedia package using the latest technology.

With Web Presenter, faculty can include live audio, video, and animated graphics, annotate presentations, capture screens, archive material, and include information from PowerPoint, Word, MatLab, and Web browsers. Courses can now be delivered to individual students, with one-to-one faculty-to-student interaction, rather than requiring a large group of students to attend the course on the same schedule.

Students need only a PC and an Internet connection to attend the course. Using the Internet rather than satellite and PictureTel significantly reduces the cost of delivering a program. CDs and a Web board are used for student download rather than videotape and the postal system.

In Duane Champion’s words, Web Presenter course delivery is the “closest thing to actually being live in the classroom for the student that we have today.”

For more information about Web Presenter, contact Duane Champion at 814-863-2829 or

Barbara Gallagher

Duane Champion, Director of Computer Technology & Assistant Chief Engineer,
Penn State Public Broadcasting

 "... it allows us to go from one individual faculty to one individual student..."

Team Leader:
   Duane Champion

© 2003. Office of Planning and Institutional Assessment   502 Rider II University Park, PA 16802-4819   (814) 863-8721   fax (814) 863-7031